Hot off the press

Chorum Technologies (Richardson, TX) announced that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued four U.S. patents for Chorum's proprietary optical-networking technologies. U.S. Patent #6,175,432, "Multi-Wavelength Cross-Connect Optical Network," is directed to wavelength routing of optical channels in an optical network to support multiplexing and demultiplexing of WDM optical signals. U.S. Patent #6,208,442, "Programmable Optical Multiplexer," is directed to a device for multiplexing or demultiplexing a WDM optical signal. U.S. Patent No. 6,201,593, "Optical Communication System Having a Liquid Crystal Routing Switch," is directed to a hybrid analog/binary electro-optical modulator using a twisted nematic liquid-crystal structure that achieves both a high extinction ratio and a rapid switching speed. A reissued patent, U.S. Patent #RE37,044, "Tunable Add/Drop Optical Filter," is directed to a tunable add/drop filter that utilizes the operational characteristics of a non-reciprocal optical setup and a reciprocal optical setup for wavelength routing and a tunable filter for wavelength selection.

North America

Sanrise Group Inc. (Dublin, CA) and its subsidiaries, a global managed storage service provider, announced that it has successfully completed the second closing of its Series B equity round in the total amount of $115 million. This round brings the total amount of equity, debt, and lease facilities issued, raised, and committed to $203 million since the company's inception in May 2000. Sanrise will use the funds to accelerate the expansion of its global fiber-optic infrastructure, among other aims.

New World Network (Somerset, NJ) received permission from the government of Mexico to land the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System (ARCOS) in Mexico. Following receipt of permission from the Mexican authorities, TyCom Ltd. (Morristown, NJ) installed the ARCOS shore-end cable segment in Cancun, Mexico, on April 24. With the marine installation of ARCOS's Phase I from the United States to Puerto Rico now completed, that will allow New World Network to continue on schedule toward completion of the entire 8,600-km ARCOS ring by the third quarter of this year.

Oplink Communications Inc. (San Jose, CA) has been issued two U.S. patents for its proprietary optical switch and optical interleaver. Patent #6,215,919 "Mechanical Optical Switching Device" and Patent #6,215,923 "Optical Interleaver" were issued to Oplink by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The optical-switch patent features a simplified mechanical design that is insensitive to mechanical drifts and up to 20 times less sensitive than other mirror-based approaches to optical-switch design, according to the company. The patented athermal interleaver design has a compact package, high stability, and low optical insertion loss. This interleaver design is for 10-Gbit/sec and 40-Gbit/sec systems with low chromatic dispersion, which is particularly important at high bit rates.

Ciena Corp. (Linthicum, MD) announced a comprehensive agreement with TyCom Ltd. (Morristown, NJ) for TyCom's purchase of Ciena's CoreDirector intelligent optical-switching system and MultiWave CoreStream transport systems for deployment in the TyCom Global Network. The two-year agreement includes initial orders valued at more than $150 million. TyCom is building a next-generation undersea optical network that will ultimately span about 250,000 km and connect all six inhabited continents.

NurLogic Design Inc. (San Diego) announced the next phase in its corporate strategy: to focus on connectivity solutions for the high-growth communications infrastructure markets. This strategy expands the company's business to fiber-optic interface products, along with delivering integrated circuits (ICs) under its own brand name. The company will focus on high-bandwidth parallel fiber-optic applications in its introduction of optical-to-electrical connectivity ICs, including physical media-dependent transceivers and physical-layer products.

The Iris Group has introduced the Optical Data Network Hierarchy, a new optical network architecture that lets telecommunications carriers scale their networks all the way from the customer premises to the long-haul, attaining transport and switching speeds of 40-160 Gbits/sec and beyond on existing fiber infrastructures. The Iris Group includes Metera Networks (Richardson, TX), an access/metro systems developer; Coree Networks (Tinton Falls, NJ), a core packet-switching systems developer; Latus Lightworks (Richardson), a long-haul optical backbone systems developer; and Iris Labs (Plano, TX), a design laboratory for intellectual property and network-management software.

Metromedia Fiber Network Inc. (MFN- White Plains, NY) has completed installation on the fiber-optic infrastructure it has leased to Multex.com Inc. Using MFN's WaveChannel Optical Network service, Multex.com will deliver data and information to end users, while supporting mission-critical applications, over a fully managed, scalable platform. The network is completely private and unshared.

As part of the JDS Uniphase (San Jose, CA) Global Realignment Program, OCLI (Santa Rosa, CA) is consolidating its operations in Santa Rosa, CA. It is anticipated that this transition will be completed before the end of September and most likely will result in the closure of OCLI's Hillend, Scotland, facility. All products and services provided by the Hillend operation will be continued from Santa Rosa.

Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, NJ) announced that Global Crossing (Beverly Hills, CA) will be first to purchase the Lucent WaveStar LambdaRouter, a high-capacity, all-optical switch for communications networks. Under the agreement, Global Crossing will deploy LambdaRouters in the United States and Europe. Lucent plans to complete installation in the third quarter of this year.

APA Optics Inc. (Blaine, MN) announced it has received a repeat order for its 16-channel, 50-GHz-spacing DWDM component. The order is contingent upon delivery and acceptance of an order received from this customer in March of this year for 21 units.

Harmonic Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA) announced that Cox Communications Inc. (Atlanta) has selected a suite of Harmonic fiber-optic solutions to support multiple system upgrades throughout Oklahoma and Kansas. Harmonic's PWRBlazer Scalable nodes, return path receivers, METROLink DWDM, and PWRLink 1310 transmission platforms will enable Cox to deploy a variety of next-generation broadband services.

The first installation of a Scientific-Atlanta (Lawrenceville, GA) Prisma II bdr baseband digital reverse fiber-optic system is enabling Oceanic Cablevision, a division of Time Warner Cable, to make more bandwidth available from existing fiber as it continues its deployment of video-on-demand and other interactive services to its subscribers in Hawaii. By providing additional bandwidth on existing fiber for the reverse-path signals required by interactive services, the Prisma II bdr system is designed to enable cable operators to maximize their ability to deliver new services over current cable networks.

Global Opticom Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA) has completed expansion of its U.S. facility. The facility is now being used for high-volume manufacturing of passive optical components. This added capacity allows the company to fulfill larger off-the-shelf and customized orders of fused couplers, WDMs, DWDMs, optical add/drop multiplexers, erbium-doped fiber amplifiers, isolators, gain-flattening filters, and hybrids.

SunGlobe Fiber Systems Corp. (Sunrise, FL) announced that its board of directors has approved a plan to initiate a corporate merger with SunGlobe Telecom Inc. (Sunrise, FL). The merger will permit SunGlobe to jointly offer its clients telecommunication service that will combine the use of satellite and fiber-optic transmission as a seamless delivery method.

VersaCOM International Inc. (Boca Raton, FL) announced the completion of the purchase of Northeast Technologies Inc. (Westbrook, ME). Management projects this acquisition, when combined with the projected Wolf Communications Inc. acquisition, will result in an additional $3.6 million in revenue per year for VersaCOM. Northeast Technologies designs, installs, and repairs copper and fiber cable systems; VersaCOM is a provider of telecommunications systems, data networks, and related products and services.

The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA-Arlington, VA) has published a new standard: "FOCIS 12 Fiber Optic Connector Intermateability Standard Type MT-RJ," TIA/EIA-604-12. The purpose of the document is to present the intermateability standard for connectors with the commercial designation of MT-RJ. TIA/EIA-604-12 is also used as an addendum to TIA/EIA-604, "Fiber Optic Intermateability Standards." The provisions of TIA/EIA-604 apply to this new standard.

Switch and Data (Tampa, FL) opened a third New York City collocation center de signed to allow network-centric service providers' equipment to interconnect with regional, national, and global fiber-optic networks. The expansion increases the carrier-neutral infrastructure provider's Manhattan footprint to 40,000 sq ft.

LighTrade Inc. (Washington, DC) and NEON Communications Inc. (Westborough, MA) announced multiyear interconnection and collocation agreements. Under the agreements, NEON will interconnect to LighTrade pooling points in Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC. Also, NEON will provide LighTrade collocation services in Boston.

Next Level Communications (Rohnert Park, CA) announced it has signed a $60-million loan agreement with Motorola Inc. Motorola, which currently owns 77% of the company, will make the loan commitment to Next Level over a two-year period, beginning May 2001.

Quantum Bridge Communications Inc. (Andover, MA) announced the next phase of the Quantum Bridge Access Alliance partner program. Through strategic partnerships with developers of free-space optics systems, Quantum Bridge enables service providers to combine the advantages of free-space optical technology with Quantum Bridge's optical access portfolio. New members of the alliance include AirFiber and LightPointe.

Yipes Communications Inc. (San Francisco) has chosen LuxN's (Sunnyvale, CA) WavSystem platform to enable DWDM transmission over its optical Internet Protocol networks. In addition to multiplying the bandwidth available in Yipes's regional networks, LuxN's products will allow Yipes to carry multiple protocols and introduce network-monitoring capabilities to enhance service-level agreements.

Blaze Network Products Inc. (Dublin, CA) announced it has joined the XENPAK Multi-Source Agreement (MSA) group to supply the industry with 10-Gigabit Ethernet devices defined by the MSA. The XENPAK MSA, announced by Agere (Allentown, PA) and Agilent (Palo Alto, CA) last March, supports IEEE 10-Gigabit Ethernet implementations and specifies a uniform form factor, size, connector type, and electrical pinouts.

CityNet Telecommunications Inc. (Silver Spring, MD) announced that Fort Worth has become the first city in Texas to approve a license agreement for the in-sewer deployment of a fiber-optic network. Fort Worth is the sixth U.S. city to approve this type of deployment, where fiber-optic cable is installed through underground sewer pipes without trenching streets, disrupting traffic, or destroying urban infrastructure.

Ai Metrix Inc. (El Dorado Hills, CA) announced that Comcast Business Communications (CBC-Philadelphia) has selected the NeuralStar Net Applications suite to help manage its broadband business services. NeuralStar will be used to manage and reconcile CBC's inventory and perform service assurance and activation in several regional networks. These services utilize network elements from Cisco Systems, Nortel Networks, Alcatel, and Quantum Bridge as well as ATM, Ethernet, Internet Protocol, switched voice, DWDM, and SONET technologies.

Startup Salira Optical Network Systems Inc. (San Jose, CA) has announced its intention to enter the passive-optical-network arena with a Gigabit Ethernet offering. The company says it will develop systems that combine the simplicity and popularity of Ethernet with the power of optics to provide a carrier-class, Internet Protocol/Ethernet optical solution for high-speed Internet access. Salira's management team boasts experience at such firms as AFC, Cisco Systems, Nortel Networks, Marconi, Alcatel, Ericsson, and Pacific Bell.

Europe

BT Ignite (UK) announced the launch of its Transborder Wavelength Services that will run over the core backbone of the BT Ignite European network. Wavelength Services are available to BT Ignite customers who require wider broadband reach and want to build and manage their own data networks without managing the optical infrastructure.

Sycamore Networks (Chelmsford, MA) and Utfors AB (Sweden) have lit a major network segment that connects Stockholm and Helsinki with Sycamore's SN 10000 ultra-long-haul transport platform. The Utfors network will offer services such as fixed telephony, LAN-to-LAN interconnect, and broadband virtual private networks to its corporate and residential customer base.

Deutsche Telekom (Bonn, Germany) has successfully tested Lucent Technologies' (Murray Hill, NJ) 40-Gbit/sec optical networking technology over a distance of 72 mi (116 km). Lucent's 40G system is based on time-division multiplexing technology (OC-768/STM-256), which transmits voice, video, and data, using a single laser over a single wavelength.

Five of the Draka Holding (Amsterdam) companies announced a new strategic alliance, "Draka Comteq," to combine capabilities, in cluding the manufacturer of raw fiber through finished cables for the worldwide telephony market. The five companies include Draka Fibre Technology in the Netherlands, NKF Kabel in the Netherlands, Draka Denmark Optical Cable in Denmark, Draka Telekom in Germany, and NK Cables Ltd. in Finland.

Blue Country networks has selected Nortel Networks (Paris) as the exclusive supplier for the first festoon telecommunications network to be deployed in the Mediterranean Sea under an initial agreement estimated to be worth $15 million. Festoon networks are submarine communications systems that have no submerged active equipment, such as re peaters. Scheduled to be ready for service in the first quarter of 2002, this network will initially connect southern France to Corsica with the West Coast of Italy and inland to Rome. Additional loops are planned for deployment beginning in 2002 to link Spain, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and other parts of France and Italy.

Infineon Technologies AG (Munich, Germany) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Catamaran Communications Inc. (San Jose, CA). Infineon will pay $250 million in common stock in connection with the acquisition. Together with Catamaran, Infineon will have a complete line-card solution, from the optics to the network-processor interface.

Dynarc (Stockholm) announced five new customer wins and two more partners have selected them for the growing Swedish metro market. Danderyd, Oskarshamn, Örnsköldsvik, Ånge, and Tierp signed agreements recently with Dynarc to deploy optical Internet Protocol (IP) rings in the metro areas and the value-added resellers PNB Communications and Swedia Networks selected Dynarc as their strategic partner to target one of the world's leading optical IP markets.

C-COR.net (State College, PA) announced that Cable-TV-Bödeli AG (Interlaken, Switzerland) has selected C-COR.net as the exclusive supplier of equipment and services for its network upgrades in Jungfrauarea, Switzerland. C-COR.net will provide headend/hub optical products, fiber-optic nodes, and amplifiers, as well as element network management, in support of Cable-TV-B

Sprint (Copenhagen, Denmark) an nounced the first successful router-to-router transmission of STM-64/OC-192 data over the TAT-14 transatlantic cable-the fastest transatlantic data transmission to date. Sprint intends to begin client installation immediately. The 15,000-km undersea fiber-optic cable is a dual, bidirectional ring configuration system linking the United States directly to the United Kingdom, Denmark, France, Germany, and the Netherlands.

South America

Ciena Corp. (Linthicum, MD) announced the launch of a second office in Rio de Janeiro. Marcelo Schoueri de Abreu has been appointed to the newly created position of director general for Ciena's Brazilian operations.

Corning Cable Systems (Hickory, NC) announced the signing of a three-year maintenance agreement for ARCOS1, the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System. NSW Submarine Cable Systems Inc., a Corning Cable Systems company, will lead the project. The ARCOS1 network will link 15 countries, starting in Miami and including the Bahamas, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Netherlands Antilles, Nica ragua, Panama, Puerto Rico, Turks and Caicos, the United States, and Venezuela.

Asia

AIXTRON AG (Buffalo Grove, IL) has received a repeat order for an AIX 2400G3 MOCVD Planetary Reactor from Mitsubishi Electric Corp. (Itami, Japan). The purchase of this production system, with an EpiRAS insitu characterization module included, will enable the Mitsubishi R&D group to develop new Zdevice structures for high-quality lasers with a fast transfer to the production department.

FLAG Telecom (Bermuda) announced an expansion of its reach within Asia with the opening of a point of presence (PoP) in Singapore. With this PoP, FLAG Telecom extends its ability to offer international managed bandwidth services and Internet Protocol connectivity by connecting Singapore to the FLAG Telecom global network.

Africa - Middle East - Australia

Marconi (London) has signed a three-year optical-networking contract with Telecom New Zealand (Australia). The agreement establishes Marconi as a strategic vendor to the Telecom New Zealand Group. The contract will bring Telecom New Zealand and Australian-based AAPT onto a common infrastructure platform.

Adtran Inc. (Huntsville, AL) announced that Telstra Corp. Ltd. (Australia) has chosen Adtran's Total Access System to deliver high-speed services to its customer base. Telstra will leverage the flexibility of the Total Access broadband access platform to deploy comprehensive network services using copper-loop DSL technologies.

"Industry Update" is compiled by Contributing Editor Stephanie Levy, stephaniel@pennwell.com.

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